Criner ready for Wildcats’ 2011 season after all

Written by Gil Alcaraz IV on July 19, 2011

I would assume that just about every University of Arizona football fan is thanking their lucky stars right about now.


The Wildcats were given some of the greatest news that they could have asked for today when head coach Bob Stoops announced that star wide receiver Juron Criner is on campus and will most likely be a full participant in summer camp as well as the regular season.


It was reported in late June that Criner might miss camp due to a serious medical condition that could put his entire 2011 season in jeopardy. However, as it turns out, the situation was family-related and shouldn’t hinder Criner’s ability to perform on the football field.


“We anticipate having Juron,” Stoops said. “He had some family issues that were concerning over the summer, and those are personal. We anticipate him being the same player – or a better player – than he was a year ago.”


After a worrisome last couple of weeks, the Wildcat faithful have to be excited to have their electrifying receiver back with them after all. During the 2010 season, Criner hauled in 82 passes for 1,233 yards and 11 touchdowns. He earned himself First-Team All-PAC-10 honors and was named to the 2011 pre-season Maxwell Award and Biletnikoff Award watch lists. He figures to be quarterback Nick Foles’ main target as well as a key piece to the Wildcats’ success in the PAC-12’s inaugural season.


It looked like it was going to be a tough year for the Arizona football team without Criner on offense, but now they can breathe a collective sigh of relief.


Who says one player can’t make a huge difference?

Gil Alcaraz IV

Gil is the owner of the Minnesota Vikings blog, The Viking Den, and an editorial writer for Lakers Nation. Having followed the NFL Draft for years, Gil has had a knack for naming some of the big surprise players to make it in the NFL. Gil is also a member of the Football Writers Association of America.

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